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  1. #1
    lashk's Avatar
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    First problem on the water

    Took out the 04 Sportster LE DI for the third time since I've owned it and "boom" your worst fear. I'll tell each step as it happened. Stopped and got gas on the way at Shell (boat was on 1/2 tank). Then put the boat in the water and idled out to open river. While idling it seemed the boat smoked more that before but I had fogged the engine after previous trip and hadn't started it since. Got past the no wake zone and took off. Boat ran great. I was running around 45 mph with 4 people in the boat. At 45 mph the rpms were around 6500. Ran for about 20-30 mins. in and out of no wake zones and no problems. The smoking seemed to nornal out too. On the way back I noticed I was running a little over 40 mph at a little more than 3/4 throttle and if I gave it full the engine didn't seem to go any faster. We then entered another no wake zone for a few minutes and the took off again. After about 2 minutes at 3/4 throttle, the boat was running great, all of a sudden the engine began to cough and sputter. I thought I make have run over a rope and sucked it up and quikly got off the gas. I then tried to slowly move around and the engine finally died. After a few minutes I got it cranked again but it ran terrible. We were pretty far out so it decided as long as it was running I would try to get it back. I had to run it around 2800-3000 rpms to limp back. A few times I gave more gas and it would sputter and shake. It took about 20 minutes to get back to the ramp like this and at some times I thought it was going to die. Funny thing was at times it seemed to straighten out and run ok. Anyway, I made it back and got it home. I looked in the engine compartment expecting to find scrap metal, and didn't find anything out of the ordinary. Pulled the plugs and they seemed ok, they did have black on the diode and on the ceramic on the inside of plug. The intake grate was clear. One thing I might mention is that I notice a red hose last night that was in bad shape on the bottom of it where it had been rubbing the engine bracket (which is rusted and rough). It comes from under the fuel rail (picture 1) and goes to the back of the boat and ties into something (picture 2). I don't know what it is for and if it had failed if it could have caused my problem. Any ideas would help.
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  2. #2
    96XPSS's Avatar
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    I'm not a DI person but according to your symptoms the fuel or air pump may be failing.

    Did your gauges give you any error messages?

  3. #3
    lashk's Avatar
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    No errors or alarms.

  4. #4
    My Jet Ski drinks more than yours Glenozzy's Avatar
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    compression test and change plugs ( new plugs each year)

    open fuel strainer and look at it

  5. #5
    96XPSS's Avatar
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    Did your fuel vapors emerging from the tank smell old when you were filling the tank?

    Glenozzy may be right, if your fuel was old. Although I would think it would have fouled the plugs immediately and gotten better because the new fuel mixed with the old.

    If anything, dump a can of Sea-Foam into the tank. The stuff works great for cleaning fuel injectors and carbs.

  6. #6
    Ziggy's Avatar
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    The red hose is a pressure dump from the air pump used in the fuel injection. It goes into a plastic resonator at the rear and then out to atmosphere. You should fix it and see if this helps. If it's a fuel delivery issue, you'll need to check your fuel pressure. It should be around 102psi. It could be a filter - there aren't any strainers on the DI systems. Unfortunately pumps & filters are expensive, so some good diagnostic work will save you from buying something you don't need.

  7. #7
    lashk's Avatar
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    Its late now but I check all the suggestions. I had run the boat 2 weeks ago on a full tank of gas bought back in Nov. that was treated with the Stabil "marine formula for ethanol gas" and the boat ran great. I used 1/2 tank and then topped it off before going out Friday, so it was half and half. I even added more Stabil. I had read a post on another forum about a boat like mine with simular symptoms one guy said it could be a rod bearing. His boat started pulling to the right and then lost thrust and started making a loud clattering noise. The guy that suggested this said a two stroke with that problem could still run at low rpms. Mine had enough thrust to go a half mile back to the launch but if I tried to give it too much gas it would smoke and try to die. At times it sounded normal on the way back. Could this be a rod bearing gone bad. The other guy never gave his outcome.

  8. #8
    KrunchovXPL-GTX-RX's Avatar
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    Take the plugs out and turn it over by hand. A bad rod bearing will show up if you rock the crank back and forth. It is usually rather apparent.

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